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Posts Tagged ‘partnership’

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner Sandwich

It is seriously hot out on the asphalt, in case you don’t know that. 🙂 While we love going to market, it sure can get like an oven during Texas summers. I was pretty wilty out there today but I remembered to bring a water bottle mister that my friend Laurie gave me and it really does the trick for cooling down roasting vendors (I even shared with some other ladies). You can put ice in the bottle and that’ll keep the water cold so that when you pull the trigger of the mister, it’s the same concept as a regular spray bottle but its value pretty much sky rockets when it’s in the upper 90s and we’re all a hot mess. Anyway, something to think about if you’re thinking you might want to get into markets in Texas. It’s hot and it’s hard work but for us it’s also a lot of fun because we get to meet such awesome people and it’s a steady income for our growing business. By the way, I’m eating a delicious concoction from our friends at the Original Winner Winner Chicken Dinner food truck. It. Is. So. Good. The crew rocks so if you ever have a chance to try them, do and tell them we sent you! We love Adrian, Kenny and Mae!

Yumminess from Chef Luis of Humble House

The above picture is one I shot yesterday at the Pearl market after our neighbor Chef Luis of Humble House Foods (graduated from the Culinary Institute of America of SA and located at the Pearl complex) brought it over to our tent – talk about getting spoiled! This sauteed vegetables dish was so great with his tomato sauce. So put them on your list to visit as well. We’ve had their Pesto and love it but had not tried this tomato sauce just yet. And guess what – it’s got our honey in there! We are thrilled to have him use our honey in his product and even happier we got to sample the goodness. Now I have another dish I can recreate here at home for us. By the way, that’s red potatoes and bell peppers sauteed with a bit of the sauce.

Roasted Tomato with Asiago & Almond

Here is the Humble House tent on a busy day yesterday. Happy every time we see fellow vendors busy and selling out.

Humble House Foods

Finally, before I go check on Mark in the Candle Shop, I wanted to share this thought with you. After the truck gets unloaded, groceries and bees are put away, and while Mark balances the books, I got us a snack and thought of how lucky we are to have access to such delicious, healthy and clean foods. So blessed! And as I cut up the fruit for our snacking, I think, “Thanks, bees. Because if you don’t get out there and pollinate these fruit plants, I wouldn’t be enjoying this goodness right about now.” Yep. Feeling pretty awesome about the bee work Mark and his friends help him do. Thanks, everyone.

Why we need bees...

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floating mums and mac

Hello and happy new year, everyone! Lunar New Year, also known as Tet (Vietnamese) and Chinese New Year (obviously, Chinese) is today and it kicks off the year of the Snake. We had a wonderful weekend together at both markets – working together as Stan and Lan had other plans. We sure missed them both.

Don’t I have a nice view while I post? For Tet, the Chrysanthemum is one of the flowers considered to be lucky so you see lots of Asian families, and businesses even, decorate with them. Flowers, flowers, flowers. I found some at our local grocery store since I didn’t have time to make a run to Houston or Austin for Tet supplies this year. In honor of the special day, I had been saving a floating mum for myself. And the fresh flowers floating in there were broken so it worked out well for me. I am the luckiest girl ever to have a beekeeper AND a candle maker. I have always loved candles and burned hundreds I’m sure. I remember, as a child, I always longed for a good storm in NC so that the power would go out and then we could light some candles! lol We didn’t have a lot of money so we didn’t burn candles just because we felt like it. 🙂 I’m so happy that I can now burn all the candles I want. Some of you ask what you can do with the bits of wax left after your candles finish burning. Well, if you are not set up for melting and filtering your own wax (though Mark micron filters it, after you burn the candle, you should probably filter in some way if your wax got dirty) for recycling into candles or beauty products, you can always do what my sister and I now do – she has a wax mini-crock-pot (don’t now the formal name for it but she got it at Gift & Gourmet in town) and I put my small wax pieces on my Scentsy burner. Smells wonderful.

Wax on the Scentsy

While we’re on the subject of candles, I helped Mark remove and then wrap new candles last night to take to the Quarry. I thought he put this bee in lotus candle but he had no idea she was in there when he poured the wax in the mold. The mold is upside down so she probably crawled in there when he wasn’t looking. There are always plenty of bees buzzing around the candle shop so we never lack for them to put in candles for all the people who are tickled to have a bee in their candle. We occasionally get one person who thinks it’s cruel but again, they are already dead so it’s not really cruel. Not sure if this lotus bee was dead or not but she’s beautifully preserved now. We haven’t sold it yet…wondering if I should save it for a special occasion. Maybe.

Bee in lotus

Moving on to chocolate, one of our favorite topics! While at the Pearl yesterday, our friends over at Ms. Chocolatier (San Antonio) quietly left us this precious box filled with their divine truffles – with our honey in the recipe! That’s sea salt sprinkled on top – what a delicious combination of lightly rich chocolate and caramel with a little touch of saltiness. Who would have thought having your taste buds hit with both would be so wonderful, but it is. Janie and her crew create these and many other wonderful sweets in their shop in San Antonio so I hope you check them out at their store or at the Pearl one weekend. On top of the yumminess, they are all just super nice! 🙂

Updated: Sorry I forogt to include the picture last night when I first posted this. hee
Caramel truffle from Ms. Chocolatier of SA - features our honey :-)

Now the weather. We got a drizzle here, a drizzle there. We’ll take it. Some friends are reporting up to an inch plus some and while we haven’t seen that, we are still hopeful since the bee yards are spread out over several counties. Even with the bit of rain we’ve had recently, there’s now enough blooming to give the bees a little boost. The wild mustard is always a sure bet for them when all else fails. They continue to carry in plenty of pollen and that makes us happy for the bees. We notice the Huisache is about to explode – beautiful but let’s see if the bees get on it this year. As you may recall, last year the Huisache bloomed beautifully but since there was an abundance of other protein blooming, they NEVER got on it! Come on bees, I need to get some nice pictures to put on my walls! haha Speaking of which, I’m also excited about getting our new bee yard set up in Medina County, which is west of SA. Huajilla country and I want to see some blooming Huajilla and snap pictures of the bees on that. We are so excited about making honey over at the Comanche Creek Ranch!

Nucs – we’re going to have some for sale next month! That’s always an exciting thing – getting people started with their own bees. In case you forget, our primary goal for GBR is to replenish the bees in our community and we can’t do that alone. Everything else we do is geared towards raising funds for us to buy, raise, divide and replenish bees while we also educate people. We’ve had hundreds of people go through our beginner bee class and we’ve had dozens take the next step in the journey to become contributing beekeepers in their own way and in their own communities. It is a responsibility for sure but also a fun adventure. If you told us in the past that you are interested in buying a nuc (nucleus hive or starter hive), then you should be hearing from us soon via email or phone if we have your number or you spoke with Mark directly in the past about it. If you don’t hear from us within a week or two, feel free to drop a comment here or send us an email. While we may not always be able to answer the phone (both of us are still working full-time, one in an office, the other in a field), we do return emails (end of the day typically) and we keep up with the blog easily on our phones. We’ll also post about the availability of the bees on Facebook and Twitter and again here when it’s time. Just wanted to give you all a heads up.

Okay, I think I covered most things I wanted to tonight. I better get to bed! Have a great week, everyone!

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JW Marriott Mark & Bethany

I have to tell you something. Despite often multitasking, it is very challenging to me to do the following all at once: carry and use the Nikon, carry a Honey Rustler gift basket, carry a small shoulder bag, snap pictures with the iPhone for Facebook posting, trek up into rocky terrain, be social and actually converse, and then walk through a fancy hotel in boots at a fast clip. 🙂 Somehow I managed not to drop anything or trip. And here I imagined I’d be able to frequently post updates and pictures from our two hour visit out at the Marriott this morning. I need to be more organized!

Anyway, we had a great time today and we are excited about moving forward with future talks about this opportunity. I think it’ll be a good way for us to break into the San Antonio area. And to be associated with a prestigious resort is pretty nice. We’ll wait and see how things develop and keep you posted. This morning’s activities including a tour with Bethany, who is the Culinary Gardener for the resort. She has some beautiful raised beds and we enjoyed seeing the various plants (some flowering and some bearing fruit and veggies!). We even got to sample a delicious orange tomato – wish I remembered the name of it. She has figs, oranges, little clementines, artichokes, squash, lots of herbs, new strawberries, green beans, and a lot of peppers and tomatoes!

JW Marriott Bee on Basil

After the garden tour, we went up the hill a bit to spot some potential bee yard locations. It is so lovely out there in the middle of not much development. And we couldn’t ask for a lovelier day to be outside. Crisp chill with a lot of sun. Perfect.

JW Marriott Bee Yard Location

Finally, we got to meet the Executive Chef Ryan and another chef name Matt. Matt recently won a competition held by the Culinary Institute of America and will moving on to the regional rounds and hopefully on to World competition! We wish him the very best. And he’s interested in the possibilities our pollen might provide in his culinary inventiveness. That would be pretty neat to see what he might do with that.

A final shot of Bethany, Ryan, Matt and Mark. This was shot out behind the Cibolo Moon restaurant. It is gorgeous at the resort and we hope everything will work out for Gretchen Bee Ranch to be out there.

JW Marriott Culinary Crew

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